Luke Humphries targets PDC ranking progress ahead of Boylesports World Grand Prix debut
Newbury’s Luke Humphries has his eyes set on a place in the top 16 of the PDC Order of Merit ahead of a busy period in the darts calendar with plenty of majors still to play.
The 26-year-old has enjoyed a promising year on the oche and will make his debut in the Boylesports World Grand Prix, which begins this weekend.
Humphries will face Dirk van Duijvenbode in the first round on Sunday and he’s exciting to get back onto the big stage.
“It will be a tough game because he is a high scorer,” said Humphries. “He is not in the best of form at the moment so it’s not the worst draw, but that means nothing when you go out on the big stage.
“It can be anyone’s game and it is a good draw, so it should be a good game between us both.
“It is a competition I have never qualified for and having the fans being back will certainly help me.”
An appearance in the Grand Prix comes at the right time for the UK Open finalist, who is set to be involved in a number of majors before the year concludes.
“I think it will mean that, once the year is out, I will have played in all of the majors so it’s another chance to show how good I can be.
“I want to keep pushing up the rankings and every win in a major will do that and it’s an opportunity to try and push into the top 16 places.”
In recent weeks, Humphries has been involved in different competitions on the tour where he has played in both Hungary and Gibraltar, reaching the semi-final in the former.
“The Hungarian darts trophy went better than the Gibraltar one and I played some really solid stuff.
“My performances were really good and in the semi-final I came up against a very good Gerwyn Price and I took it as a compliment because he knew how well he had to play to beat me.
“In the Gibraltar one, I had a tough first round draw against Gabriel [Clemens] and although I thought I played well, it wasn’t meant to be.
“I did what I wanted to do, however, and that was to qualify for the European Championships and it’s another tournament I can tick off.”
Being able to play in these competitions provides the Newbury man with opportunities to earn more prize money and jump up the PDC rankings.
“It’s important to qualify for these majors because it’s where the ranking money is and it is what will push you up the rankings.
“If I have any chance of being in the top 16, then I need to be involved in all of them.
“I am really proud of the achievements I have made this year and I have made progression, which is what I needed because people have needed to see me on the TV stage more.
“I have made one final on the TV stage this year and I am hoping I can make another before the year is out.”